The United States has deployed supersonic bombers and fighter jets in response to North Korea’s recent missile tests.
The B-1B bombers conducted a joint air drill Saturday with other South Korean and U.S. warplanes, according to South Korea’s joint chief of staff.
It said the exercises demonstrated the US’s “iron-iron” security commitment to South Korea and the allies’ joint defense posture.
North Korea widely condemned by the international community on Friday test firing an intercontinental ballistic missile (ICBM) capable of carrying multiple nuclear warheads at ranges anywhere in the continental United States.
North Korean leader Kim Jong Un Watching the test with my daughter – in her first public appearance – and touted ICBMs as a “reliable and maximum capacity” weapon to deter US military threats.
Photos in state media showed Kim Jong Un holding hands with the girl as they watched a huge missile be loaded onto a launch vehicle.
Friday’s launch was part of an ongoing series of missile tests by North Korea seen as an attempt to expand its arsenal.
Some foreign experts say the Hwasong-17 missile is still under development, but it is North Korea’s longest-range ballistic weapon and is designed to carry multiple nuclear warheads to defeat U.S. missile defenses.
The North Korean Central News Agency (KCNA) said the missile launched from Pyongyang International Airport flew at a maximum altitude of about 6,040 kilometers (3,750 miles) and traveled about 1,000 kilometers (620 miles) before landing in international waters off the country’s east coast.
“The test-firing clearly demonstrated the reliability of the new main strategic weapon system, which can represent (North Korea’s) strategic power, and its strong operational performance as the world’s most powerful strategic weapon,” KCNA said.
“Kim Jong-un solemnly declares that if the enemy continues to threaten [North Korea]Frequently introducing nuclear strike means, our party and government will resolutely respond to nuclear weapons with nuclear weapons and comprehensive confrontation with comprehensive confrontation,” KCNA said.
Mr Kim’s statement suggested that North Korea would continue its weapons testing campaign as the United States continues to strengthen its security commitment to allies South Korea and Japan.
There are concerns that North Korea could conduct its first nuclear test in five years in the coming weeks.